For though we live in the world, we do not wage war as the world does. The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds. We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.
2 Corinthians 10:3-5
Our weapons are different from the world’s because our enemy is different. A Christian’s real enemies are never people. On the contrary, we are to love people! Our enemy is the Devil, the one Jesus called the “Father of Lies.”
This is an extremely important distinction. We build up people and destroy lies. Hindus, Buddhists, Moslems, New Agers, Wiccans, Atheists, Agnostics, Abortionists, Liberals, Conservatives —these people are not our enemies. Our enemies are spiritual strongholds of deception, half-truths, arguments over insignificant theological points, proud thoughts and anything which leads the people we love away from knowing the God who loves them completely in Jesus Christ. It’s good to remember this.
Your attitude should be the same as that of Christ Jesus:
who, being in very nature God,
did not consider equality with God something to be grasped,
but made himself nothing,
taking the very nature of a servant,
being made in human likeness.
And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself.
And became obedient to death.
Even death on a cross!
Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
and gave him the name that is above every name,
that at the name of Jesus every knee shall bow,
in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord,
to the Glory of God the Father.
The lesson here is simple yet difficult. In following Jesus we are following One who did the opposite of our natural inclinations. We are inclined to equate our own thoughts with God’s (instead of considering that beyond our grasp), we are inclined to make more of ourselves than we ought (instead of making ourselves nothing), we are inclined to be served (rather than to serve), we are inclined to appear to others greater than we actually are (not less), we are inclined to pride (not humility), we are inclined to disobedience rather than an obedience which causes even a part of us to die (i.e. our self–image, our comfort, our desires.)
We enjoy following Christ up to the point where He heads towards the cross. After that, He’s on His own, it often appears (sadly).
But those who follow Him “on the way down,” will also follow Him, “on the way up.”